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And while you’re at it, go and catch a falling star…

July 2, 2013

Here’s a newsletter that went out to subscribers a few hours ago. Some of the material will be familiar to followers of this blog—but not all of it. There are, for example, three books free to Kindlers for the next several days, and the lowdown on Smashwords:

I don’t know how this happened, but a glance at my calendar tells me that 2013’s half gone. (I suppose that makes me a pessimist, seeing the calendar half empty, when an optimist would see it half full.) But where did the past six months go? I ask in vain; “Tell me where all past years are,” John Donne implored, and as far as I can make out, nobody told him.

I don’t know where the time goes, but I know where I’m going, and that’s Out Of Dodge. I’ll be away from mid-July until late August, with my internet access hovering somewhere between Slim and None. So, as this’ll be my last newsletter for the next two months, I’ll devote it to answering your questions…Yes, you in the back, with the silly hat.

Today’s Tuesday. Does this mean there won’t be any more Orange Wednesdays until the fall?

It does, but can’t you see a hint of orange on today’s horizon? As a parting gift, I’ve made three Kindle titles yours for the taking for the next several days. I’ll tell you more in a moment. Yes?

I saw the great PW review for Catch and Release. Will it be possible to get signed copies?

CatchAndRelease2Catch and Release, a new collection of short fiction, is a joint effort of Subterranean Press and Hard Case Crime. Tony Daniel gave the book as great a review as I’ve ever received, and I gather there’s been a surge of orders. If first printings are important to you, you might want to pre-order now.

As for signed copies, I don’t expect to be offering them in LB’s Bookstore. I suspect some mystery booksellers will have them available, and know you can pre-order a signed copy from the Mysterious Bookshop (, 800-352-2840).

I don’t see an eBook offered on the Subterranean site. Will there be one?

There will indeed. I’ll be ePublishing it around the time that the hardcover is released. And you can be sure I’ll let you know about it.

You just mentioned LB’s eBay Bookstore. I went there a week or so ago and it seems to be closed.

You’re an observant young woman. The online bookshop is indeed closed for renovations, and will reopen sometime around Labor Day, with a big Back To School sale and auctions of some rare and one-of-a-kind items. There’ll be announcements, so stay tuned.

What’s up with JWW?

newsexualunderground2I assume you’re referring to John Warren Wells, under whose euphonious name I wrote 18 works of sexological nonfiction back in the day. I ePublished JWW’s entire backlist as Kindle Select titles, and now, as they come out from under the umbrella of Amazon exclusivity, I’m making them eVailable as well for Nook and other platforms. Four titles are already up and running: Versatile Ladies Nook Smashwords The New Sexual Underground Nook Smashwords Beyond Group Sex Nook Smashwords and Sex and the Stewardess Nook Smashwords. The other fourteen books will have to wait until I come home. Some of you look confused. Yes?

What’s Smashwords?

Smashwords is a site that enables self-publishers to cater to all varieties of eReaders. In my own case, while I can upload efficiently on my own to Kindle and Nook, Smashwords allows me to make my work accessible for Kobo, Apple, Sony Reader, and just about any eGadget on which you might wish to read it. Besides the JWW titles shown above, here are some books and short stories you can pick up from Smashwords: The Burglar Who Smelled Smoke, The Burglar Who Dropped In On Elvis, Keller in Dallas, Generally Speaking, The Night and the Music, A Stab in the Dark, A Walk Among the Tombstones, A Long Line of Dead Men, Matando a Castro, Ehrengraf For the Defense, Collecting Ackermans, Clean Slate, Let’s Get Lost, Batman’s Helpers, and By the Dawn’s Early Light.

Go ahead, load up your eTruck. I can wait…

What’s next after Catch and Release?

Another collection, with the likely title of  The Murders in Memory Lane. It’ll consist of my newspaper and magazine nonfiction—critical essays, introductions, appreciations, and remembrances, all of them centered on the mystery genre. And it’ll be followed by a similar volume, as yet untitled, assembling pieces about New York, about the rest of the world, and about, well, me.

Both of these will be eBooks which I’ll publish myself, and I’ll probably bring out trade paperback editions as well. And there’s a good possibility there’ll be a small hardcover edition of The Murders in Memory Lane for collectors. The books will most likely be published in the late fall. Rest assured that I’ll let you know the details in plenty of time.

Okay, I’ve been patient. Now tell us about the free stuff.

Fair enough. If you’ve got a Kindle, you can download two of my short stories and one full-length book at no cost during the next several days.

Which stories? Which book? Where are the *@#$%&!!! links?

Hey, y’all are resourceful. You don’t need no stinking links. You don’t even need titles. Go to Amazon and hunt them down for yourselves. Think of the fun you’ll have!

Meanwhile, let me share some cover art I’m particularly fond of. Mulholland’s trade paperback edition of Hit Me is scheduled for October release, and the cover’s a complete departure from the hardcover. I loved that one, and I’m just as keen on the paperback version:

Block_HitMe_PB 3-1 3

And Shanghai Translations is bringing out the four Chip Harrison titles in Simplified Chinese, and how do you like this approach?


Great covers, but how good are the translations?

I’ll let you know after I’ve given them a close reading.

Yeah, right. What about audio? Didn’t you blog about audio recently?

I did, and thanks for reminding me! A reviewer said something really nice about my own work as a narrator, and how could I possibly keep that to myself? It turned out that I had a lot to report about audiobooks, and those of you who follow my blog don’t need to wade through it all again. But this newsletter reaches more folk than subscribe to the blog, so one mouse click and you can catch up for yourselves.

You know, I’m beginning to get an idea where the time goes. A fair amount of it goes into putting these newsletters together. But I can’t say I regret a moment of it, and can but thank you for your part in the process, and wish you well until we meet again in early September.


LB’s Bookstore on eBay
LB’s Blog and Website
LB’s Facebook Fan Page
Twitter:  @LawrenceBlock

PS: As always, please feel free to forward this to anyone you think might find it of interest. And, if you’ve received the newsletter in that fashion from a friend and would like your own subscription, that’s easily arranged; a blank email to with Newsletter in the subject line will get the job done.

From → Uncategorized

  1. permalink

    Yup, I hunted them down myself…more fun than twiddling my thumbs any day.

    Patricia Hall

  2. Guess I have an arithmetical disorder, or it’s the flu I’m fighting. LB wrote that there are “two… short stories and one full-length book” available as costless Kindle downloads. I read that as 2 + 1 = 4. I checked Kindle four times, then read the blog entry a second time, redid my math and thank you, Mr Block, for some wonderful reading.

    Question: Are there enough Mick Ballou short stories to build a collection from, or are most of them in other anthologies? Ballou’s interesting enough to be worth his own anthology.

  3. Jonathan permalink

    Mr. Block,

    I just finished reading Enough Rope and it was the best collection I’ve ever read. 84 varied and fantastic stories. I was quite stunned by some of them. Thank you for making them available in one volume.

    Some of my favorites include: The Tulsa Experience, Three In The Side Pocket,
    Someday I’ll Plant More Walnut Trees, and the Ehrengraf stories.

    One note: In hardcover this collection is quite heavy (close to 900 pages). So, I recommend getting a digital version, if one is available.

  4. Levin Messick permalink

    Enjoy your vacation. I will go online to pick up some of your books to help you pay for it! LOL

  5. Lorraine Guile permalink

    My husband just bought me the two volumes of Bernie stories. I have them on hardback and paperback and now Kindle. I love reading them. Since my husband is paying for them all I am certainly not complaining. I have all the Matt Scudders in all forms so far too. I hope you have a wonderful holiday.

  6. Ellen Frank permalink

    Dear Mr. Block, ready for another Keller!! Perhaps Keller and Dot can sit around drinking ice tea and discuss old ‘hits’, something along the lines of Matthew Scudder and Mick Ballou up all night rehashing old times and Matthew telling the story in ‘A Drop of the Hard Stuff’. More Keller, please!!

    • Ellen, there’ll be something new coming for Christmas. Around the 23rd of October I’ll be able to tell you what it is…

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